Meerut: Kaleem, a young Muslim philanthropist and Shalu Tyagi, a Hindu woman gained national headlines in August last year when their love affair turned into a case of “Love Jihad” by Hindutva groups became husband and wife on Friday night by saying ‘qubool hai’.
According to news published in The Hindu, the lovers, whose relationship had virtually shaken entire western UP got married in a ‘nikah’ ceremony in Meerut.
Dressed in a red lehenga, Shalu, who changed her name to Bushra Jannat after she converted to Islam last year and Kaleem, who wore a suit moved off to an undisclosed location.
22-year-old Shalu said, “This is what I wanted. I am happy to be with the person I love,” after the nikah ceremony adding that she did not want to return to the “painful” past.
Kaleem’s parent’s relatives and friends to greet and bless the couple attended the ‘nikah’ ceremony while Shalu’s parents stayed away.
“My parents were opposed to our relationship. But I am sure that I would be able to convince them one day. I would just say that had we been allowed to do what made us happy, it would have saved us from lots of pain and torture, but I have no complains,” said Shalu, who used to teach English in a madrasa in Uldhan village.
Asked about the ‘love jihad’ charge, Shalu said, “I would suggest people to mind their own business. It is a free country and they are also free to fall in love with whosoever they wanted.”
He said, “Love jihad doesn’t exist. It was created by evil forces to polarise and for political gains.”
“Our lives were destroyed and we had to go through hell. Local Hindi newspapers and news channels turned me into a dreaded terrorist who headed a love jihadi group in western U.P. The girl I love became my rape victim. We as adults had full freedom to decide for ourselves the kind of life we wanted but now that we are together, I would like to forget the bitterness and move on to new things in life,” he said.
The BJP leaders by convincing woman’s father lodged a false case of gang rape and forced conversion against Kaleem, depicting him as a “love jihadist” after he accepted the marriage proposal of Shalu.
The Sangh Parivar and saffron groups took up the case “love jihad” to spread hatred and violence. The headline-grabbing term ‘love jihad’ used by Hindutva activists launched an elaborate campaign to claim that it as an Islamist conspiracy to tricked and convert Hindu women boils the western UP leading to communal riots.